Hanwha infielder Kim Geon-geon, 23, started his first first-team game in a long time as the No. 7 designated hitter against SSG in Daejeon on April 8.
As he put it, “it was very disappointing,” and he didn’t really showcase his skills that day. After striking out in two consecutive at-bats against opposing starter Roenis Elias, he was replaced by Jung Eun-won in the third inning. Kim was removed from the roster the next day. After the game, he felt sick and had a ringer at the hospital, but he never recovered.
Kim has been hitting well for Hanwha’s second team this season. As of Thursday, Kim has appeared in 28 games for the Futures, batting .381 with an OPS of .945. On May 30, Hanwha manager Choi Won-ho called up Kim, who had been hitting well in the second team, and immediately put him in the first team.
It paid off. Kim lived up to his manager’s expectations, going 2-for-4 with a double and a run scored against Kiwoom that day. After failing to produce a hit in the next three games, he was sent back down to the second team, but his solid performance in his first first-team game in a long time set the stage for what was to come.
“It was very disappointing because it’s not an opportunity that comes around very often,” Kim said when we caught up with him ahead of the KBO Futures All-Star Game at Sajik Stadium in Busan on Thursday.
Kim’s stellar performance in the Futures League earned him a spot on the Northern League All-Star team and a spot in the “Feast of Stars. “When I came to the pros, I had a lot of injuries, including an ACL tear. I was really upset that I couldn’t capitalize on the opportunity I was given after such a long time.” “I honestly think that being sick is an excuse, I should have paid more attention to my body,” he reflected.
“It’s already happened, and I have to prepare again and come back up, so I can’t stay wet,” he said. “I think it’s all experience, and I think my skills will improve as I solidify what I felt in the first team.”
Looking ahead to the second half of the season, Kim’s goal is to help Hanwha stay in contention for a top-five finish. 안전사이트 “There’s not much difference between us and the middle of the pack. I want to help us continue to close the gap in the second half.”